Tobia Scarpa, son of the architect Carlo Scarpa, was born in Venice in 1935. He studied architecture at the IUAV in Venice, where he met Afra Bianchin, with whom he would share his profession and life, graduating in 1957 and marrying shortly after, immediately beginning a brilliant professional collaboration.
During a university course in Furniture Design taught by Franco Albini in 1959, Tobia and Afra designed the Pigreco chair for Gavina, a company later taken over by Knoll. Many of their projects have made design history and are included in the permanent collection of various museums worldwide. The Poltroncina 925, designed for Cassina in 1966, is on display at MoMa in New York, while the Libertà chair, designed for Meritalia, is in the Contemporary Art section of the Louvre. Afra and Tobia Scarpa also designed the famous Soriana armchair for Cassina, receiving the Compasso d'Oro in 1970.
Between 1962 and 1975, the pair designed the Fantasma, Foglio, Biagio, Pierrot, Ariette and Papillona lamps for Flos. Their collaboration with B&B Italia resulted in the design of the Coronado sofa in 1966. Tobia Scarpa also produced numerous architecture projects, perhaps less well-known than his design work. In addition to villas and palaces, with his wife Afra, he managed the construction of several industrial plants, including the first Benetton brand factory and many of the brand's shops throughout the world. In 2008, he received the Compasso d'Oro lifetime achievement award.